Tuesday, January 22, 2008

As Promised...Roasted Chicken with Potatoes and Carrots

For the Chicken:
1 - 5 to 6 lb chicken
canola oil
4 tbsp butter, softened
2 hefty sprigs of rosemary
4 sprigs of thyme
1 large lemon
salt and pepper
2 carrots - rough chop
1 onion - rough chop
2 stalks celery, rough chop
1 small head of garlic, cut in half
salt and pepper
For the Vegetables:
1 lb small potatoes (red, new potatoes work well here)
1 lb big-ass, thick carrots (TWSS)
olive oil
3 sprigs of thyme
1 sprig of rosemary, finely chopped
salt and pepper
For the Jus:
white wine
1 - 2 c GOOD, low-sodium, chicken stock, if needed
salt and pepper

some kind of roasting dish that will hold the chicken (I prefer the Le Creuset stoneware in blue, yes, pretend it's blue - blue makes the food taste better):

fine-mesh strainer
small, heavy-bottom sauce pot

Procedure -
(Preheat oven to 400 F)
1. Rinse chicken inside and out. Remove giblets and reserve for another use. Pat chicken dry.
2. Rub chicken with 1/2 lemon, then rub with the softened butter.
3. Cut lemon half into small pieces and place in chicken cavity, along with the rosemary and thyme sprigs.
4. Liberally salt and pepper the chicken. Tie legs together and tuck the wings under the chicken (to prevent them from burning).
5. Rub inside of roasting pan with canola oil, add carrots, onion, celery, and garlic. Place the trussed chicken on top of the vegetables in the tray.
6. Place chicken into oven and roast until the temperature in the thickest part of the thigh is 170 F, about 1 hour and 15 minutes, depending on your oven.
7. Remove chicken from roasting pan, place on a platter, and cover with foil. Allow to rest for 1/2 hour before carving.
8. Strain accumulated juices from roasting pan into sauce pot. Add the wine (and more chicken stock, if needed). Reduce over medium heat, skimming frequently to remove excess fat and foam, until sauce has desired flavor. I prefer a thin, jus here, but you can thicken the sauce with a cornstarch slurry or a roux if a more gravy-like sauce is desired.
9. Season jus with salt and pepper and add a tbsp, or so, of butter to gloss and finish the sauce.
10. Carve chicken (that's another post) and squeeze the other 1/2 lemon over the chicken. Serve with the jus on the side.

1. Cut the potatoes into equal sizes (small ones in half, larger ones into quarters).
2. Peel the carrots and cut into chunks about the same size as the potatoes.
3. Place the vegetables on a cookie sheet or in a shallow roasting dish, large enough so the vegetables remain in one layer.
4. Drizzle with olive oil and sprinkle liberally with salt and pepper and the herbs. Mix the potatoes and carrots with the oil and seasonings so each piece is evenly covered.
5. Roast at 400 F for about 45 minutes, until the vegetables are soft and the potatoes have browned slightly.
6. Serve immediately. Alternatively, the vegetables can be kept, covered with foil, on the stove, and reheated for 5 minutes at 400 F, but they won't be as delicious.

If you only want to clean one roasting pan, you can just skip the mirepoix in the bottom of the tray with the chicken and put the potatoes and carrots in there instead. Just put the chicken on top of them and roast. The vegetables will have a delicious, smoky, rich, chicken flavor, but they may not brown as much. Your call. Either way, it's really win-win.

Oh, and I guess this serves four, maybe six - kind of depends on how big the chicken is and how hungry people are...

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